I miss the Narcs validation. Years later I find myself wanting to say to her, look what I have done. Like a kid who cleaned his room. A dog who retrieved the stick. I am looking for my reward; my validation. Obviousness a sign of my own insecurities, or is it.
I was never a confident person growing up. I am not talking about just the sort of lack of confidence that would make talking in front of thousands of people or performing on stage a nightmare. I am talking about confidence in the choice of clothing I wore, or what I ate, or what friends I had. Growing up I constantly questioned my own thoughts to guide me through life. I kept to myself and created my own little great world were everything was right. When I was put in a social situation I was always searching for someone to validate that what I was doing was right. Some of that still lingers.
My own insecurities I believe is one of the things that drew me towards her originally, and her to me. That validation she provided me in life in the love-bombing stage. She made me feel like a hero, like everyone else was against me, but she was in my corner. The more she did it, the more I sought it out from her. In effect I was giving her all the attention in order to receive that validation. When she stopped validating me, I gave her even more attention seeking that validation. Because, she was now my only source of it; everyone else was against me. She had me relying on her and isolating me from others and myself.
I slowly forgot to respect myself in the process as well. This made me even more insecure; as I doubted my view as unimportant. If I did not respect myself, how would she ever respect me. But I didn’t care, as long as she validated me, all was OK. So I accepted it as normal. I was now on a slippery slope. One that I do not like to think about how it would have ended up if it was not for an unexpected turn.
That turn? I was becoming successful in my career. I was getting promotions and more responsibility. I could slam dunk any project or responsibility handed to me. I had the respect of my colleges, and those business connections I was making. I was gaining confidence in myself. I ultimately believe it was this confidence that caused the narc to make her next move. The move that would finally let me begin to break free from her death grip. She became disinterested in me, because I did not need her validation all the time anymore, so she started having an affair; which led to divorce.
The crazy thing is, there are still times I want her to say, “boy, your looking good”, or “that’s a nice car”, of “wow, you really got the house looking good”. Worthless, empty, validation. I have to try hard to remember to love, respect, and validate myself. I need to demand respect from others. Not seek their validation. I need to focus on the process, rather than the outcome. No more look what I have built. Look what I have accomplished. Rather let the activity itself be self-satisfying. Self loving. Self respecting.
This is something, that to this day, years after freedom from the narc, I still need to work on. It’s not automatic, I have to work at it. Someday, after many years of a practicing self respect I know it will become automatic. So if you struggle as well with the damage the narc does to one’s soul, your not alone. These things take time.